TheCityUK sets out focus for year ahead

TheCityUK’s Chief Executive will this evening use the organisation’s third anniversary celebrations as a platform to set out its focus for the year ahead, emphasising the importance of the UK’s relationship with the EU and London’s role as Europe’s financial hub as critical to the future of the UK economy.

Speaking at TheCityUK’s Summer Reception, hosted by international law firm SJ Berwin and attended by senior figures from across UK financial and related professional services firms, Chris Cummings will urge the sector to look beyond historic competitive advantages in order to build more business. He will call for a focus on the importance of a stable and predictable tax regime, appropriate regulation and the ability to attract skilled people to the UK to advance the economy and compete against global peers.

He will say: “TheCityUK was formed three years ago at the height of the financial crisis. Since then we have worked hard, with the strong support of our members, to address the big issue of how to keep the financial and related professional services sector competitive during turbulent times. This has included campaigning for a tax regime that encourages international companies to invest and do business in the UK, and for trade policies that allow our members to expand into growth markets.

“A robust financial and related professional services sector which enables banks to lend and firms to expand into new markets is the oil in the engine of UK economic recovery. The recent creation of the Financial Services Trade and Investment Board is a welcome sign of the Government’s commitment to promoting financial and related professional services overseas and expanding export opportunities. But there is more to be done, and now more than ever we must demonstrate the importance of our role as Europe’s financial hub.

“It is vital that we get the UK’s relationship with the EU right to maintain our competitiveness. This means completing the Single Market, and championing trade agreements, such as the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership currently being discussed by the EU and US, that could add billions of pounds to the UK and EU economies and create thousands of jobs.

“Our research shows that the UK and EU both benefit greatly from the UK’s membership of the EU, and we will continue to work hard to ensure that the evidence-based argument is heard on this crucial issue. In particular, the EU benefits from having London, the world’s leading financial centre, as its hub and entry point for companies based outside Europe. We want to see a Europe that is dynamic, competitive and economically strong, which means having the UK at the heart of it.”

TheCityUK is the voice for the whole of UK financial and related professional services and champions the international competitiveness of the sector. Created in 2010 following industry calls to establish an independent cross-sector body, TheCityUK supports the whole of the sector across the UK, promoting financial and related professional services at home and overseas and playing an active role in the regulatory and trade policy debate.